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Inside track: Construction & Infrastructure

24 August 2021

#Construction, Infrastructure & Projects

Inside track: Construction & Infrastructure

In the media

Infrastructure Australia charts a pathway to resilience as the national cost of natural disasters hits $39bn by 2050
Infrastructure Australia has outlined practical steps to deliver infrastructure that is more resilient to threats such as bushfires, droughts, floods, global pandemic, and cyber-attacks, in new advisory papers released (20 August 2021).  More...

Building demand drives 1.4 per cent quarterly increase in Australia’s housing construction costs
CoreLogic’s national measure of residential construction costs show an increase of 1.4 per cent in the three months to June 2021, outpacing the Consumer Price Index of 0.8 per cent for the same period. A shortage of materials such as timber, PVC piping and fittings have contributed to the rise in costs with no sign of easing in the short-term (18 August 2021).  More...

Construction industry calls for essential worker classification as builders, suppliers 'going to the wall'
Members of the construction industry have gathered on either side of the Queensland-NSW border, some risking a fine, to call to be classified as essential workers allowing them to cross (18 August 2021).  More...

Fast-tracking and investment boosts for road safety projects
The Federal Government has announced further investment boosts for Australian roads, through the Road Safety Program, to fast-track projects in WA, VIC, SA and Queensland. The funding supports the fast roll-out of life-saving safety works on rural and regional roads (17 August 2021).  More...

Slow vaccination hampers construction recovery in Australia and New Zealand
Australia and New Zealand’s construction outlooks improved over the second quarter of this year but slow vaccination programmes, rising costs from supply chain pressures and labour shortages are creating considerable challenges, says consultant Turner & Townsend in its latest market report (16 August 2021).  More...

Lockdowns weigh on new home sales in July
New Home Sales fell by 20.5 per cent in July, with declines experienced in almost all major states, according to the HIA New Home Sales report – a monthly survey of the largest volume home builders in the five largest states (11 August 2021).  More...

New South Wales

Western Sydney City Deal setting the foundations for a connected, sustainable city
Progress on the $11 billion Western Sydney City Deal has continued to reach significant milestones, with the program helping to generate local jobs and deliver critical infrastructure that will enhance the sustainability (20 August 2021).  More...

DKO-designed social and affordable housing in Redfern is ready
An 18-storey residential development in Redfern, NSW offering 160 social and affordable housing units is now ready for occupation. Located on Gibbon Street in the inner city Sydney suburb of Redfern, the residential tower is one of the largest social and affordable housing projects in all of NSW (19 August 2021)  More...

Construction costs climbing for a key Australian tunnel project
The construction cost of Australia’s West Gate Tunnel project may climb even higher according to reports. The massive spike in costs arises from the discovery of around 3 million tonnes of contaminated ground along the route (17 August 2021).  More...

 'Threat of collapse': Builders of Opal Tower caught up in row over separate building
Corroding balustrades which pose a "threat of collapse" are among the many defects found in an apartment complex in Sydney's south as the building commissioner issues the Opal Tower builders with an order to fix (13 August 2021).  More...


$174 million to fast track Queensland road safety projects
Queensland road safety projects will be fast-tracked with a $174.7 million package to enable almost 50 more upgrades to be completed in the next 12 months (16 August 2021).  More...

$320 million for QLD’s second biggest infrastructure project
The Queensland Government has allocated $320 million to the state’s second biggest infrastructure project – the new Southern Queensland Correctional Centre – as part of a $1 billion government investment in Queensland Corrective Services for 2021-22 (13 August 2021).  More...

Queensland’s second biggest infrastructure project surging ahead
Budget Estimates has heard that safety and security are receiving a significant boost with the Palaszczuk Government investing $1 billion in Queensland Corrective Services for 2021-22, an increase of $32.2 million on the last financial year (12 August 2021).  More...

Making renewables work for Queensland workers, families and communities
Minister for Energy, Renewables and Hydrogen Mick de Brenni launched public consultation to collect community feedback on Queensland’s renewable energy zones (QREZs). This will be the first time in the nation that communities will be able to have their say on how renewable projects and energy infrastructure within the QREZ (10 August 2021).  More...


Renovations boom set to continue in Victoria
The boom in renovations activity in Victoria continues to break records and this activity is expected to be sustained for several years, in the released HIA economic and industry Outlook Report for Australia (20 August 2021).  More...

MBA: Supply chain issues and trade shortages in construction
Master Builders Victoria has been working tirelessly to address the impact of the current supply chain issues and trade shortages hampering our industry (19 August 2021).  More...

Practice and courts

ABCB: Inspection and certification of fire safety systems
The final consultation in response to the Building Confidence Report (BCR) is now open. Recommendation 19 of the BCR is that each jurisdiction requires registered fire safety practitioners to design, install and certify the fire safety systems necessary in commercial buildings. Responses to questions in the discussion paper are invited until 26 September.  More...

Adoption of NCC 2022 to be delayed
The delayed adoption will also see adjustments to key dates in the amendment cycle process for NCC 2022 to allow stakeholders time to participate. These adjusted dates include:
May – July 2021: NCC 2022 Public Comment Draft released for public consultation
May 2022: NCC 2022 Preview published at
If you have any questions regarding the delayed adoption of NCC 2022, please submit an online enquiry.

New South Wales

Guide for design practitioners and engineers
Consult Australia, Engineers Australia and the Australian Institute of Architects have joined forces to develop the Guide for design practitioners and engineers to help their members tackle the recent NSW Building Confidence reforms. There are multiple new obligations on design practitioners, engineers and building practitioners throughout the life of a building under the NSW Design and Building Practitioners Act 2020 and the Design and Building Practitioners Regulation 2021.

Infrastructure Grants program opens
To be eligible for funding, applications must meet eligibility conditions including, the project location, the applicant and project benefit, purpose and development status. There is also a requirement for local government applicants to match funding. Applications are open from November 2021: Monday 1 November to Monday 22 November 2021.  More...

Have your say on changes to how building design and construction is regulated in New South Wales
The development of supporting regulations is the next step on delivering on this piece of the Government’s building reform agenda, with the scheme commencing on 1 July 2021. In response to your feedback, we've drafted a report that explains the changes that were made to the draft Regulation.  More...

Conflicts of interest – savings and transitional arrangements
Clause 71 of the Regulation introduces savings provisions for certain conflict of interest situations where the certifier was appointed before 1 July 2020 and the work will be completed before 1 July 2022. The provisions relate to council-certified developments and to developments where the certifier gave advice on how to comply with the BCA deemed to satisfy provisions. For all the changes, access the Amendment Regulation here.

New mandatory standards for building rectification
The standard will be reviewed and updated prior to the 1 July 2021 commencement of the Government’s game changing building reform agenda underpinned by the Design and Building Practitioners Act 2020.
The first Practice Standard will initially apply to certifiers working on residential apartment buildings, where the majority of problems and complaints have been received. The Practice Standard for registered certifiers is available on the Fair Trading NSW website.


Mooloolah River Interchange consultation
For more information on the Mooloolah River Interchange, including how you can have your say, view the planning layout visit the link below. Consultation closes on 27 August 2021.  More...

QBCC reminder: Extension to PI insurance cladding exemption
The Building (Professional Indemnity Insurance) Amendment Regulation 2020 commenced on 18 September 2020, giving effect to the extension of the external cladding exclusion. Now, certifiers can continue to obtain a licence to operate with PI insurance containing exclusions in relation to non-compliant external cladding until 30 June 2022.  More...


Important COVID-19 restriction information for the construction sector
The current lockdown across metropolitan Melbourne has been extended and a curfew put in place until 11.59pm on Thursday, 2 September.  More...

Changes to the authorised provider and authorised worker list
13 August 2021 – more changes have been made to the Authorised Provider and Authorised Worker list by the Department of Health. The Department of Health has approved more changes to the Authorised Provider and Authorised Worker list.  More...

Solo outdoor building and construction services permitted where physical distancing can be maintained and businesses have an ABN
10 August 2021 – additions have been made to the Authorised Provider and Authorised Worker list.
Solo outdoor services related to building and construction have been added to the Authorised Provider and Authorised Worker list.

VBA: Revised AS/NZS plumbing standards – transition period
The VBA has applied a transition period for plumbers to familiarise themselves with revised AS/NZS standards, before they need to be applied to plumbing practices on 1 September 2022.  More...

VBA: Carpenters selected for first stage of trades registration
Carpenters will be the first group of trades registered under Victoria’s recently developed trades registration framework. Provisional registration and licensing for carpenters is expected to commence in mid-2021. For more information and answers to frequently asked questions, refer to the Engage Victoria website

The information in this publication is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavour to provide accurate and timely information, we do not guarantee that the information in this newsletter is accurate at the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future.

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